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Wydad win a boost for Moroccan football

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Spain's Lopetegui: Group B draw will demand the best of us

Sid Lowe explains why Spain are content with drawing Portugal in Group B and evaluates their chances of winning the World Cup.
The ESPN FC panel break down Group B where they feel Portugal and Spain are favourites over Morocco and Iran.

Spain coach Julen Lopetegui has a lot of admiration for the three countries his team will face in the group stages of the World Cup.

The 2010 World Cup winners, Spain have been placed in Group B with European defending champions Portugal, Morocco and Iran in Friday's draw in Moscow.

Spain qualified for next year's tournament after finishing top of their group, five points clear of Italy. Lopetegui's side won nine of their 10 games and went unbeaten in qualifying.

"Without a doubt, we have a hard,...

Ranking the prospects of Africa's contenders after World Cup draw

Africa's five sides learned their fates in Friday's group-stage draw, but what are the quintet's chances of reaching the World Cup knockout stages now that we know their opening opponents?

Here's how we rank the continent's representatives in light of Friday's draw.

5. Tunisia: The Eagles of Carthage appear to be the continent's weakest representatives in Russia next summer, and their slim hopes of reaching the knockouts weren't helped by a tricky opening group.

Had they found themselves in Egypt...

 By Nick Miller

World Cup Group B: Portugal, Spain, Iran, Morocco

The ESPN FC crew discuss the World Cup draw.
The ESPN FC crew discuss the World Cup draw.

An intimidating group? Spain and Portugal stand out as the two favourites to progress, but in Iran and Morocco they have been drawn against two tricky teams who are absolutely capable of bloodying noses. Morocco were the only African nation to qualify without conceding a goal, and their sturdy defence will be required if they are to make it through, while Iran have Saman Ghoddos, the Ostersunds attacker who is obviously used to causing upsets. The European sides should go through, but it won't...